Distracted driving is one of the top causes of motor vehicle accidents across the United States, accounting for around one in four of all auto accidents every year. Part of the reason it is such a common cause of accidents is because people will often engage in other activities when they are supposed to be focused on driving. Here are just seven of the most common types of distracted driving seen on the road:
- Texting and cell phone use
- One of the most common reasons for distracted driving accidents is texting and cell phone use. The ease of access to texting and social media has meant that people can, and will, use them at any time, including when they should be paying attention to the road. This leads to accidents when people take their eyes off the road and their hands off the wheel to type on their phone.
- Programming a GPS
- If you are using a GPS to guide you to a destination you’re not familiar with, you should always program it before you start driving. Unfortunately, many people will instead try to save time and program it while they are on the road. While many systems have protections to prevent this from happening while the car is in motion, it is still a source of distraction that can lead to an accident.
- Changing the radio
- Most people do not think of changing the radio as being particularly distracting, since you do not need to look or touch the radio for particularly long. After all, most people only search for stations briefly, and will tend to have their favorites programmed as presets. However, even the few seconds you spend choosing a station can be enough to cause an accident.
- Eating and drinking
- When people are in a rush, they may tend to eat or drink when they’re in the car. Some people see this as an efficient use of time, since they can use one hand for their food or drink and the other to stay on the wheel. However, even the mere act of eating and drinking can result in distracted driving, and potentially lead to an accident.
- Personal grooming
- It takes a lot to get ready in the morning, with showering, shaving, putting on makeup, and doing anything else you need to get ready for the day. However, that does not mean you should do all of that in the car when you are running late. If you do, you can easily cause an accident due to being distracted doing your personal grooming.
- Reading books or magazines
- It is not uncommon for people to read books or magazines during their daily commute. However, that is most safe to do if you take the train, not if you are driving to work. Nevertheless, there are a shocking number of people who decide that the morning commute is a good time to catch up on their reading, leading to distracted driving accidents.
- Dealing with children or unruly passengers
- You do not always have the choice whether to drive with children or with passengers who constantly demand your attention. However, when they do so, it can be easy to take your eyes off the road, leading you to miss things that happen right in front of you. That is why, if you want to avoid distracted driving, do what you can to pay attention, no matter what is happening in your back seat.
Fox Law Firm, PLLC is a New York personal injury law practice serving clients throughout Nassau and Suffolk counties. With more than three decades of law practice experience, attorney Kevin Fox has helped clients in personal injury cases obtain the compensation they deserve. For more information or to ask for a consultation, call our Riverhead office at 631-779-3400 or visit our contact page.